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Day 26 - March 2, 2006

Today the House passed what Governor Sonny Perdue calls the 'truth in class size bill.' The bill lowers class sizes in grades five through eight to 28 students in most classes. The bill includes $163 million for new teachers. House Bill 1358
passed by a vote of 160 to 4 today. The bill is part of Governor
Perdue's legislative agenda. Some Democrats took the opportunity to
criticize the governor for what they call flip-flopping on the issue.

A bill designed to give more legal protection to citizens defending themselves passed the Senate today. Senator Greg Goggans sponsors Senate Bill 396 and says it would add self-defense protections in situations outside the home, auto or workplace. Senator Regina Thomas
and a few others believe this bill could lead to dangerous situations,
that a self-defense plea could be used in unnecessary situations.

The Senate today voted to revise the legal definition of feticide and to prohibit the voluntary manslaughter of an unborn child. Senator Rene Unterman spoke in favor of Senate Bill 77.
Democrats made several unsuccessful attempts to amend the bill, saying
they wanted to make it stronger. Republicans said those efforts would
change the bill's definition of an unborn child. SB 77 passed with one
Democrat amendment that was amended by the Republicans.

Senator Cecil Staton is working on a plan to improve Georgians' access to level one trauma centers.
There are currently four in the state, meaning seriously injured people
in some parts of Georgia may have to travel over one hundred miles to
receive proper care. Lawmakers' David Zelski has this story.

The Georgia Legislative Black Caucus today agreed to support a resolution favoring the covenant with black America. Author and activist Tavis Smiley met with the caucus to promote the covenant which outlines ten priorities for black Americans.